What is Happening in Haiti?

After the deadly 2010 earthquake that destroyed much of Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, many progress has been made in terms of infrastructures investment, job creation and the relocation of much of the 1.5 millions that the earthquake had made homeless. The earthquake had destroyed much of the Capital’s hotels making it even more difficult to accommodate outside visitors. But as of right now, Haiti is experiencing an impressive boom in Hotel construction, in fact, Petion-Ville hotel’s construction rate, is the highest in the whole Caribbean. There have been some significant progress made in ensuring travelers safety. The United Nations Office of Drugs and Crimes, and the prominent Vanderbilt University, respectively found that Haiti’s crime rate is the lowest in the Caribbean. Yes, Haiti’s crime rate is 12 times lower than that of Mexico’s, 5 times lower than that of Jamaica, and even 3 times lower than the Dominican Republic’s which Haiti share the Island of Hispaniola with. Both studies made the conclusion that Haiti’s crime rate is equal to the crime rate of Long Beach, California. The progress are very encouraging, but much still need to be done.
So it is very important to highlight some of the impressive developments  that’s been happening in Haiti, to show the world that Haiti is moving forward but still needs its help to continue in the right direction. Haiti needs the world’s help not with charities and hand outs, but with investments. The current Haitian government has made outside investment one of its top priorities; I’m sure that you’ve heard of their much echoed slogan: ” Haiti is open for business”, and they really have put some extremely attractive offers on the table to back their claim. Before the earthquake, it would have taken over 6 months to legally set up a business in Haiti, this has been reduced to less than a week. The current Haitian government guarantees free lands, and tax exemption for a number of years to companies interested in investing in the Country. There is still some reluctance as anyone would expect, but the possibilities of a company succeeding in the Haitian market is really limitless. One can take Digicel as a prime example. This telecommunication company revenue in Haiti for 2012 alone reached $500 million and is expected to grow significantly this year. Digicel entered Haiti’s market in 2006 and as of 2013 Haiti is Digicel’s largest revenue contributor. Business is so good for Digicel in Haiti, that they have recently moved their international french-speaking headquarter from Martinique; a France’s oversea territory, to Petion-Ville.
Haiti is an unexploited market that can transform small companies into giants in a very short period of time, it just needs people who doesn’t resumed Haiti to what they’ve only see on TV; take a chance, and I can guarantee you that you won’t regret it.
Haytrac Power & Gas
construction project in haiti
Haytrac Power & Gas has begun the construction of its U$123 million, 15.000 m3 terminal for storage and supply of liquefied natural gas on August 20th 2013, near Cité Soleil and Morne à Cabrit . Also part of the project is the construction of a pipeline to directly supply fuel to the power plants of the industrial area of Port-au-Prince. The significance of this project is enormous, it will eliminate the cost of fuel transportation of these companies operating in the industrial parks, rendering them more profitable which will in turn allow them to increase their productivities. Nearly 200 permanent local employments and an estimated 6.000 indirect jobs will be created in the process. The construction of the facility will take 36 months.
Tourist Destination Île à Vache

Île à Vache is a small island of Haiti lying on the southwest peninsula near the town of Les Cayes, it is about 8 miles (13 Km) long, 2 miles (3.2Km) wide with an area of 20 squares miles (52 km). On August 20th, 2013 major development projects for the tiny island have officially begun. The Haitian government has allocated U$230 million for the construction of an international airport with a 1.6 miles (2.6 km) runway, modern roads throughout the island, electrification, a community radio, an emergency center, and a community center which will house a library, an internet cafe and a playground for children and an 18 holes golf course. Separate fund have also been set up for the rehabilitation of 2 major mangroves reserve on the island. In the meantime 4 major investment groups in the tourism industry have expressed their desire to built hotel facilities on the Island, namely Azur Resort and Spa, Blue Marlin Development S.A, Charles Fequiert S.A, Holmes International Development LLC and Royal Oasis. The completion of these projects are expected to be in 2015. I should also mention that there are already two resorts on the island, Abaka Bay and Port Morgan; earlier this year, the beach of Abaka Bay was ranked #57 on CNN World’s 100 best beaches.

Complexe Royale Oasis
The Complexe Royale Oasis is a mega center that recently opened in Petion-Ville on December 12th 2012.  It was projected to open in 2010, but  the extensive damages the Earthquake did to the country’s economy and infrastructures, prevented it from respecting it’s opening date.
The Complexe Oasis, is the biggest complex of its kind in Haiti. The 7 stories building houses a luxurious 132 rooms 5 star hotel, a bank, nice upscale boutiques and restaurant, serving the finest of Haitian Cuisine as well as foreign ones of course, and needless to say many other great amenities are also offered. The cost of this ambitious project was U$29 million.
Best Western Premier Hotel
Best western Haiti
This 5 star luxurious Hotel  opened in Petion-Ville on April 3rd of 2013; it was first projected to open late 2013, but work has sped up, in order to compete with Royal Oasis (see above) which has just open its door.  The economic boom that some major cities in Haiti are getting, gave investors the confidence to invest. Mark Williams, the North American Best Western Vice-President said ” I feel safe in Haiti, I take precautions like I always do in every foreign country I visit.” When asked about the many challenges that Haiti faces, his response was:
” Haiti tourism industry is getting a lot of attention right now. Although Haiti is one of the oldest countries in the world, Its Tourism industry which has almost vanished,  is rising again; at a very unexpected but favorable speed; So economically, it makes a lot of sense to invest in this part of the country.”
This 7 story, 106 rooms hotel with a Presidential and 2 Governor suites, will feature a 40” flat screen TV in every room  and  a view of the breathtaking bay of Port-au-Prince. More than half of this lavish hotel is owned by a group of wealthy Haitian businessmen. The cost of this hotel is U$10 millions.
Marriott Hotels and Resorts
Mariott hotel construction in Haiti
Marriott International is in the process of building this 45 million dollars, 173 room luxurious hotel in the lush and quiet mountainous area of Port-au-Prince, Turgeau. Just 5 miles from the Airport, in collaboration with Digicel, Haiti and the Caribbean largest cell phone company. It will house 5 Presidential suites and will offer: Free WiFi, a 40”Flat screen TV in every room, sauna, a gym and so many other great amenities, such as 24 hour room service, a lobby bar and a lounge to name just a few.
” This hotel is one more signal, that Haiti is open for business.” Said  Arne Sorenson, Marriott International’s CEO.
The construction of the hotel have begun in December of 2012 and the completion is expected to be in early 2014.
Hotel des Artistes
Located on 21 acre property, adjacent to the Toussaint L’Ouverture International Airport in Port-au-Prince, is the construction of this mega 250 rooms 5 star hotel, for the cost of $38 million. Besides its envious location, one of the best features of the Hotel de Artistes is it’s gingerbread House design. Haiti is world famous for Its 18th century colonial gingerbread house, and the engineer of this marvelous structures wanted to play their part on the conservation efforts of  Haiti’s gingerbread house, and loudly emphasize the country’s uniqueness. Despite its 10 presidential and royal suites, the Hotel des Artistes will mainly target  regular visitors, especially Haitian diaspora who usually stay in Port-au-Prince before jumping into a plane or bus to visit their relatives in other parts of the country. Gym, free Wifi, spa, 2 pools are among the numerous amenities that will be offered. Early 2014 will saw the completion of the Hotel des Artistes.
Belle Rive
The Belle Rive Residences, Hotel & Club is an exciting development of a private luxury residential, hotel and club resort in the coastal town of Jacmel a city South East Haiti.  The Residences at Belle Rive consist of 21 sensitively designed townhouses of four stories.  Each townhouse will accommodate four spacious units each.  In addition, on 7-story tower will house ten luxury apartments, for a total of 94 deluxe residential suites, each with its own fabulous ocean view.  Unit sizes for two, three and four bedrooms will range from 1, 375 square feet (SF) to 2,770 SF.  This international-style resort will consist of 94 deluxe townhouses and tower apartments, a 120-room 4-star hotel and a private club. Contract has recently been signed with the Haitian Government, and work have started on January of 2013.
Ritz Kinam Hotel
The iconic  Ritz Kinam Hotel in Petion Ville was destroyed as a result of the deadly 2010 Earthquake. With new design, new management, more luxury in mind, the $10 million reconstruction of the Ritz Kinam is expected to raise some eyebrows when it’s completed next year. The reconstruction began in 2012.
El Rancho Village
The iconic hotel El Rancho has recently announced its acquisition of  the old brand hotel Villa Creole for an undisclosed amount. After its completion in 2014, the revamped Hotel El Rancho will be the largest hotel complex in Haiti, with 170 rooms. A new management team will take over the day to day activities of the Hotel, but the majority of its employee will remain local. The hotel will be integrated in a village with apartment complexes, convention center, a movie theater, gym, restaurant and many other great amenities. This $70 million dollar project in the heart of Petion-Ville will be completed in 2015.
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. has already spent US$50 million to expand its cruise-ship port on the private verdant, breath taking island of Labadee, off Haiti’s northern  coast; in order to accommodate its largest cruise ships. Last year, Labadee received 600,000 passengers; in 2012 and in 2013, the numbers of passengers are expected to reach over a million, Keep in mid that the Haitian Government receives U$6 for each tourist. Royal Caribbean Cruises is also one of the largest employers in Haiti’s Northern region with 300 locals employees, and it also allows 200 merchants, mainly artists, to sell their goods on the premises. Investments by Royal Caribbean Cruises include the building of a modern road between Labadee and La Citadelle and the Sans Souci Palace; both, UNESCO World Heritage sites. The impressively majestic Citadelle is the largest fortress in the Western Hemisphere and considered as the 8th wonder in the world. Royal Caribbean Cruise also planned to build a 5 star hotel close to the Citadelle. There’s already an agency providing safe horse trip from the cruise port, to the magnificent wonders.
Village de Port-Jacmel
Le Village de Port- Jacmel will consist of a 45 room, 4 star Hotel and Boutique Resort that’s affordable for everyone.
The resort will have a retail shops, art galleries, 3 restaurants and 4 bars, a one of a kind entertainment deck over looking the beautiful historic Jacmel and the Jacmel Bay. The property will include entertainment such as weddings, fashion shoots and all kinds of amazing amenities.
Other amenities include: Spa, Gym, Marina, Bakery and  Boulangerie, Tennis Court by Venus Williams and home of the Venus Williams Haitian After-School Academy.
Also home to Haiti Tours Inc. a full service concierge company providing door to door service to properly and safely experience all Haiti has to offer. Haiti Tours offers specially trained guides, which have notably graduated from Yele’s new Hospitality School. These guides will escort you to Haiti’s most remote and beautiful locations. It’s our passion and pleasure to introduce you to Haiti’s Hidden Gem!
Le Village de Port-Jacmel founder Michael Capponi who is one of the pioneers that helped spawn the rejuvenation of South Beach in the early 90’s, promises to have true first class events always happening in this resort. Property developed by Capponi Khawly Vorbe Group.
Caracol Industrial Park
The Caracol Industrial Park is a $300 million project built on a 617-acre  site in the North-West Department of Haiti, in collaboration of the Haitian Government, the US State Department and the Inter-American Development Bank.  The giant park, which includes a water-treatment plant, a worker housing not far from the facility and a 10 mega-watt power, plant will create 65.000 direct employment and will be responsible for an estimated 20.000 indirect jobs. The industrial park officially opened on October 22, 2012.. The US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, her husband and ex President of the US, Bill Clinton attended.
The Industrial park construction has faced a lot of criticism from many concerned environmentalists, farmers, and labor advocates. To clear the way for the construction of the park, the Haitian Government had to evict 366 farmers from their rightfully own, very fertile land; the location of the industrial park is not far from one of the most fragile ecosystem in the Caribbean;  Caracol, a coastal town, is  home to Haiti’s most extensive mangroves reserve and one of the most beautiful coral reefs in the region. Caracol is also home to two critically endangered sea creatures: The Atlantic leather back sea turtle (The largest of all living turtles and the fourth largest reptile in the world); and, the black jew fish. Environmentalist fear that the construction of such a mega industrial park will severely disturbed the habitat of these animals and ultimately caused their extension. The anchor tenant, SNH Global, is a South Korean clothing manufacturer with troubles labor relations records, specially in Guatemala, where it operates many factories, is also of many concerns.
While the construction of this industrial park will unquestionably provides jobs for tens of thousands, it should have been constructed elsewhere, in consideration of the little that is left of the country’s fragile environment and also to protect those fertile lands. It is very reckless for the Haitian Government and Its’ international partners, to replace lands with high agricultural potentials that could feed countless of people, with concrete, while destroying the little that is left of Haiti’s ecosystem. It is imperative to include the protection of the environment and the encouragement of sustainable agro-production in the rebuilding process of Haiti. The northern region of Haiti is the most fertile of not only Haiti, but the entire Island of Hispaniola, the construction of such enormous industrial parks and other non-agriculture related colossal structures should be avoided at all cost; we must instead encourage agro-investment that will most certainly reduce Haiti’s dependency on basic, staples food importation and, at the same time improve the life qualities of its inhabitants. We encourage Haitians and others concerned, to be more involved in the rebuilding process of Haiti, and speak out when decisions take by the Haitian Government and others are not in the ultimate benefit of Haiti and its people.
Toussaint L’Ouverture International Airport
The Toussaint Louverture International Airport suffered enormous damages during the deadly 2010 earthquake. Many planes were diverged to nearby Airports in the Dominican Republic, then passengers were obliged to travel from the Dominican Republic to Haiti by bus. After a couple of weeks, services were restored for international flights, but the damages to the terminals were very apparent and some of the runways were severely damaged. A couple months following the devastating earthquake, the government of Haiti hired the Haitian Firm Panexus, to not only repair, but also to reinforce the structures and expand the Airport; doubling its capacity, putting it in line with international standard.
Today, after 2 years and an estimated 8 million dollars spent, the Toussaint Louverture International Airport is up to date. It is equipped with 20 counters making it easier to serve more passengers; a VIP and a diplomat lounge, numerous escalators, special access for the disabled, many shops, bars and cafes, new runways that can accommodate 3 additional 300 seats aircraft, new parking facilities and a passenger pick up area are located across. The Airport now can withstand a magnitude 8
th earthquake on the Richter scale.
Duty Free Americas
Haiti duty free americas
On December 18, 2012, Duty Free Americas opened its first duty free shop at the Toussaint L’Ouverture International Airport. The 180 Sq store employs 25 locals. At the same aforementioned airport, Duty Free Americas is expected to open its second store by the end of March of this year. “Both stores are high quality. We want the country to feel they have a top-class  duty free retail offer and items” Said Duty Free Americas director, Leon Falic during a press conference.
University Hospital of Mirebalais

MIrebalais hospital
In a partnership between the Haitian Government and the World Bank, is the construction of a 205.000 square feet hospital in Mirebalais. This University Hospital is equipped with 300 inpatient beds, 6 modern operating rooms, 30 outpatients consulting rooms and a space to accommodate 140 students and resident physicians.  The University Hospital of Mirebalais has the capacity to receive 500 people per day and is one of the largest in the entire Caribbean. The hospital is equipped with 1,800 solar panels, making it the only energy independent hospital in Haiti, and the largest in the Americas! The cost of this project is U$17 million, and has recently opened in January of 2013.
Les Cayes International Airport
Les Cayes Airport
The expansion of Les Cayes regional airport into an international one have officially begun on February 1st, 2013. This expansion of $ 26.6 millions will be assured by the Dominican firm Estrella, in a period of 2 years. Although there are a number of regional airports in the South Department of Haiti, an International one with the capabilities to accommodate large aircraft will open the South of Haiti, a Department with tremendous tourism attractions capabilities to the international world. So come 2015, forget about the hassle and brouhaha of Port-au-Prince. You will be able to travel directly from the US, Europe etc… to Les Cayes.
Karibe Hotel & Spa
karibe hotel haiti

The Karibe Hotel and Spa is the latest hotel, joining the latest International 4-5 star standard hotel construction boom in Haiti. The CEO of this luxurious hotel has recently announced its hiring of J/Brice Design International to design a new wing for the hotel, which will add an additional 100 luxury guest rooms, as well as an upscale new eatery and entertainment venue with rooftops terraces and sea views; doubling its capacity. Karibe saw extensive damage during the 2010 earthquake, but after just 10 months and nearly U$2 million dollar spent, Karibe was the first major hotel that got completely repaired.
It’s CEO refused to yet comment on the cost of this expansion. The new expansion is expected to be so lavish that everything is being strictly kept secret until the D day which is expected to be in mid 2013.
Hotel et Suites Monte Cristo
Haiti hotel monte cristo
The Haitian government has recently announced it’s green light to the construction of the Hotel et Suites Monte Cristo in Port-au-Prince, Tabarre, one of the Capital’s most affluent neighborhoods, home to the US embassy, the private residence of ancient President Jean Bertrand Aristide, and other past high ranking officials. The $9 million dollar hotel will feature 84 rooms including 6 presidential suites and amenities such as a night club, restaurant and bar, pool, gym, free wi fi, will be offered.  Construction of the hotel is due to begin the summer of this year, 2013 and, early 2014 will saw the completion.
X-Core & Suntel
haiti computer assembly jobs
Soon, Haiti will possess It’s computer manufacturing company. X-Core, a Taiwanese corporation with offices across the United States of America, and numerous countries in Africa, Asia, and South America, will partner up with the Haitian electronic company Suntel Ltd to start manufacturing discount computers with the capabilities of consuming much less energy that regular computers that are in the market today. The machines will be designed in Haiti, then parts will be ordered mostly from China, than the assemblies will be completed in Haiti. The company will recruit 1.200 employees to produce 10.000 machines per month. The computers will be marketed under the brand name of Suntel, according to Eula Adam, the CEO of X-Core. In an interview accorded to Lenouvelliste, Mr Adam said: ” We want to build a brand that is recognized and accepted in Haiti and in countries like the Dominican Republic and other Caribbean States where we can export with a lot of Haitian pride. It will take work, but it is worth it!”
The construction of the assembly factory is expected to start in the summer of 2013.
JetBlue Airways
Jet Blue Haiti
jetBlue has recently announced its plan to begin offering one daily non stop services to Port-au-Prince from New York and twice daily non stop services from Fort Lauderdale, starting in December of 2013. jetBlue spokeswoman Allison Steinberg said: ” We feel that the airport infrastructure can support our operations”  Haitians living in the US welcomed the news with a lot of enthusiasts, considering the high cost of flying with American Airlines which so far has a monopoly in the Haitian air travel market.
With expansion into Port-au-Prince, we plan to meet the demand for quality service to Haiti by offering competitive fares to the large Haitian diaspora in the United States.” Said Scott Laurence, vice-president of network planning for jetBlue.
Haiti Aviation
Haiti Aviation
It’s been 18 years since Haiti has had its own airline, that is no longer the case, because a group of Haitian investors have recently launched Haiti Aviation which made its inaugural flight on July 19th 2013 from Miami to Port-au-Prince. Haitians in the diaspora and of course the Haitian government welcomed the news with great enthusiast. American Airlines had the monopoly in the Haitian airline industry for a long time and continues to face lots of criticisms for their exorbitant ticket prices, but thanks to this new national Airline, competitions and the lowering of ticket prices by American Airlines and others operating in Haiti can be expected. Haiti Aviation offers daily round trip between Miami to Port-au-Prince and, Miami to Cap-Haitien from Tuesday to Thursday as of right now. They also plan to start offering bi-weekly flight between Port-au-Prince and Panama very soon. We urge Haitians living in South Florida to support this new national pride by booking their flights to Haiti with them, we have a duty to do so in order for them to continue expanding their international routes. The Minister of Tourism, Stephanie Villedrouin is currently working with Haiti Aviation on a plan to start offering vacation packages.
Sunrise Airways
Sunrise Airways is a new Haitian own commercial airline with its hub in Port-au-Prince, and is expected to add its first international route on the 26th of August 2013. Sunrise Airways will begin to offer daily round trip between Cap-Haitien and Turks and Caicos. The carrier hopes to begin flying other international route in the near future.
Jacmel Administrative Complex

The Jacmel administrative complex is part of a $40 million fund allocated by the Haitian government for the rehabilitation of the beautiful city of Jacmel. The administrative complexe will not only consist of government buildings, but also an amphitheater, a public market and a hospitality school. Everything should be ready by 2014.
Lumane Casimir Village
Started on December of 2011, the Lumane Casimir Village is one of the many housing projects underway to  allocate the victims of the deadly 2010 earthquake that had left over 1.5 million people homeless. This community to date, is comprised of 1.000 units; 550 houses and 450 apartments. Each housing units is comprised of 2 bedrooms, a dining room, a modern bathroom, a modern kitchen equipped with a gas stove that will help curb the deforestation problems plaguing the country. This village named after the great singer Lumane Casimir, also has a primary school, a police station, and fire department. Once completed in 2015, a public market, a mini industrial park and a sports field will also be built.


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2 thoughts on “What is Happening in Haiti?

  1. There is an old saying in Texas… “Don’t eat that, Wilbur, it’s horse manure.”

    This is a neat propaganda article.

    The concept of setting up a corporation, in a week, is the result of some cocaine smoking nut’s delusions. Haiti is open for business to a very few.

    And, for God’s sake, what does Haiti do with all of these expensive hotels, with no tourists, and nothing for the tourists to do. You cannot go out at night – it is too dangerous.

    If you want something, after hours, there is no room servive.

    In other words, there is nothing!

    The money would have been better spent on useful things.

    Where did the cash for these hotels come from??

    That is the interesting question.

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